4 Practices to Make Coaching Easy and Effective
NEW BOOK GIVEAWAY!!
20 copies available!!
Leave a comment on this guest post by Marcia Reynolds, PsyD, Master Certified Coach, to become eligible for one of 20 complimentary copies of her new book, Coach the Person, Not the Problem.
(Deadline for eligibility is 6/6/2020. International winners will receive electronic versions.)
You don’t need years of training to help others discover solutions to their problems.
For 25 years, I have taught leaders to use a coaching approach in their conversations. They love the idea, and they think it is quicker to tell people what to do.
I disagree. I think it saves time to coach people to think more broadly for themselves. They become agile thinkers who don’t have to regularly go to their bosses for answers.
Add these four steps to your conversations to quickly change minds and behavior:
#1. Start by being curious.
Let them tell you the story behind the dilemma they are facing. Accept their perspective.
Once they trust you won’t make them wrong, they will be open to explore how they can change their story.
#2. Share what you hear and notice.
Use reflective statements like summarizing and noticing shifts in facial gestures. Say things like, “So you are telling me . . .”
“Sounds like you feel they are doing this to you . . .” and
“You got quiet when you mentioned that. Can you tell me what you were thinking?”
Replay what you hear and see so they can review the movie in their mind.
#3. Find out what they want.
Ask how they would like the story to end. They may not know specifics, but they might define a destination they can move toward. Their goal could even be peace of mind.
There is always something in their control to change.
#4. Ask them to take one step.
When they start to see new possibilities, ask them to explain what they see. Then ask what they might do now. Get them to declare a next step to take within a specific time frame.
Committing to at least one small step ensures progress and growth.
What makes coaching conversations effective?
Thanks for your comments. Winners have been selected and notified!
Dr. Marcia Reynolds is CEO of Covisioning, LLC; on faculty of coaching schools in the US, China, Russia, and the Philippines; and the author of four books published worldwide, including her latest, Coach the Person, Not the Problem. She is passionate about the power of coaching because she believes we inspire change through conversations. Read more at www.Covisioning.com.
Love these daily doses of leadership!
Thank you for the opportunity to learn more through your book. Very interesting, and it is definitely something I would like to learn more in order to lead/coach effectively going forward. I believe I may pick up a lot of pearls as an aspiring leader of people.
Great approach and very doable. Thank you.
Thank you for the opportunity to learn more through your book
Thank you for consideration for a free copy! Any conversation tips are appreciated. When working with non-native english employees communication is ever so key and important. We need to re-verify understanding continuously.
Excellent tips on encouraging clients to come up with their own answers – they’re much more likely to act on them if they thought of them. Thx Dan
Coaching is such a critical but severely untapped tool in the leader tool belt.
Coaching is one of the most powerful leadership tools we have available. Whether in a structured coaching relationship or using “coaching energy” to serve another person by helping her or him think through an issue, coaching keeps the responsibility where it belongs—with the person facing gather challenge.
Interesting parallel that this coaching relationship – however brief in time and shared experiences it may be – rests on the human connection more than the idea that the situation will swing on the “answer.” Your strategy of leveraging connecting skills – listening, paraphrasing, facilitating others thinking and commitment – accelerate building trust, which is a pre-requisite to relationship. When I grow up to be a (better) coach, I want the last step to be those being coached to see themselves as able to help others by recognizing what enabled them to grow, succeed, and move forward through challenges.
Thanks for today’s suggestions. I try to approach my teachers with this mindset.
I have thoroughly enjoyed your blog over the past few weeks. The title of this book is so intriguing! I am really an advocate for looking past the problem to create a more global solution that could benefit more than one person at a time.
Using coaching skills has been a game changer in my career. I’ve seen the people I work with grow and flourish because they know that I want them to have the opportunity to do just that. The suggestions you have in your post are the basics to getting a conversation started, especially if the other person has been in a coaching conversation before. A tip that I’ve found helpful is to share my intentions with the other person from the get go; something like “Dan, there are many ways we can work together on this. My goal is to give you the abilities to tackle this, I believe you’re capable and I’d like to help you by acting as your coach. I’ll be here to support and guide you, but I want to you forge the path.” It lets people know what I expect of them and helps me to remain in the coaching mindset!
I am an educator and a strong believer in the power of coaching! Being able to know how to deliver feedback in a way that does not feel critical or evaluative can really impact practice. I am looking forward to reading this book.
I really enjoyed Marcia’s WBECS session this year & looking forward to the book.
Helpful information. Thanks for investing in me!
Coaching is a journey, you won’t get it right the first time but the trick to find something you’re comfortable with and start somewhere. Yes, it’s easy just to tell someone how to do it but I find that by asking open ended questions that requires my team to tell me how it went and what went well and what could be different you can right away understand what to coach against. I like the telling a story analogy and the envisioning the end state tip above. Thanks for keeping the insight coming.
Thanks for sharing, I use this and it really works. I can build great teams where average employees become great leaders. If I could get the other supervisors to use the same method when these guys promote up and work for them, it could be fantastic. Some people take that skill away from them because they fear it, believing that if they have power over you they are superior, not realizing that when they have strong leaders under them, they also have upcoming leaders forming.
Great tips on coaching. I have read many books written by coaches of basketball, football and baseball as I have seen the success they have had with their teams. A great approach to getting results.
Great points! Step 3 always seems the hardest for me, as many people can’t define or don’t know what they want.
Great tips all. I especially like #1 — “Start by being curious.” I believe that is essential, and that all growth (or own and others) starts with curiosity.
Great questions to guide people to their own discovery.
This is good information. Many of my former managers we’re really good with number one and number two. As for three and four, they either never asked nor gave me the impression that they cared. I am a delivery manager whereas I do not have direct reports, but I do have people reporting to me for project work. This is good information for me to listen more and help coach them into getting what they’re looking for.
Everyone has a story, the key is to get them to tell you. Be curious and allow them to believe you care about their best interest. Share an example of your story, ask a question and sit back and listen.
Moving people towards being their best is the most important work I do, and the hardest. Thanks for the post!
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Humility and curiosity are so very important. I’m continually impressed by the power of the “What else?” question to help others engage in ownership of their own issues. Thanks Dan and Marcia!
Insightful list. I especially appreciate the approaching the situation with curiosity. An open mind will help with creativity and empathy.
I absolutely agree with this approach – it takes time and trust in the process but it can yield some fantastic results both in problem resolution and in the personal / professional development of the individual that you are working with. It is hard to let go and to allow colleagues to find their own solution to an issue that might not always work, but there is so much learning to be had when things don’t quite work as anticipated. Great guest post!
Such a great topic. And timely too, as I just started leading a team of 5.
interested for sure
Thank you for this great reminder as I continue to build my coaching skills.
It’s sometimes easier to take a team members problem on and try to fix it for them….coaching, on the other hand, takes more time but pays dividends longer term.
I’ve employed several parts of this idea in the past and am excited to read the book and find out how to become better at coaching conversations.
Yes! Just one step gets the momentum going. Thanks for the great summary and the reminder that we can all help others on their journey as we travel ours.
This meshes nicely with what we do with Strengths coaching.
I agree coaching is very effective in helping individuals be more effective!
So very helpful and simple to begin implementing TODAY! I especially love the nudge to ask them how they want the story to end. I have a meeting today where I will do just that. Thanks Dan!
Really appreciate the daily insights, I put it to use daily.
Coaching, rather than telling, is my leadership style. I want all of my leaders to be coaches of their own staff, but we are not there yet – still overcoming the old model of leadership is management. As always, a great daily topic, timely to my practice.
Thank you for the opportunity of possibly winning the book. Coaching is such an ongoing development.
I would be interested in receiving a copy of this book. Thank you!
Hi Dan. Coaching in its true form is revolutionary. What is unfortunate is the term ‘coaching’ is used so to describe an intervention that is really corrective action where the coach tells someone what to do. I have been the beneficiary of true coaching and it is so far from those things.
Great advice and insight. Thanks for sharing.
Great post. Coaching can mean many things to different leaders depending on their leadership style.
Effective coaching to me comes from leaders who model the behaviors they wish to see in their teams through connecting with them through servant leadership. While there is still some room in certain industries for “manager” (top-down) leadership and coaching, many industries and workforces now require a level field with leaders serving in the “trenches” right alongside their staff. This helps promote mutual understanding by providing perspective to the leaders (what are your people going through) while also encouraging connection (do you know your staff and what makes them tick).
If you compare it to sports coaching, which million dollar ball player is going to take a coach seriously who themselves has never been on the field? It’s great that you have the book-smarts or knowledge, but you need to be able to connect that to the emotion/passion of the work/game.
Coaching provides the support and guidance we need. I love the idea of curiosity that is a new concept that I am going to try out!
Great Advice! “Let them tell you the story behind the dilemma they are facing. Accept their perspective.” Thanks for sharing!
The skill of listening for them – not to determine what you’ll say next – is a gift in and of itself and coaching goes deeper when one learns to do away with ‘yes/no’ questions. I’ve received great compliments following a ‘coaching’ conversation that was never once labeled that (except right here, hah!). There is richness in the encounter especially when a manager really listens, acknowledges, and keeps the control with the individual. Truly priceless. Thank you for guest-posting – we can always grow with reminders and lessons such as these!
Amazing Dan, You offer the book everyone speaks out!
Please give the book to someone else, I just enjoy the daily discussions, as we have seen Coaching, Mentoring, Teaching has many challenges, in the workplace complications develop over power struggles, reality is we all have to work together!
I like your four questions, it reminds me of a quote, “Without a good question, a good answer has no place to go”, – Clayton Christensen. In coaching, we just need to get into a habit of asking one good question at a time, and then shut up and listen.
Simple and profound advice. Tip #1, be curious, can provide great benefit in many ways.
Thank you for the chance at a free copy of your book. As a Principal, coaching teachers is so beneficial for them and their craft as well as the students who receive the impact.
The best way I have found for people to share their issue or dilemma in a non-judgements way is to ask them, “Help me understand…..”. It changes the narrative from defending oneself to educating the listener about the problem.
I think when you become a good leader, coaching is not something that you have to purpose yourself to do but it is the way that you communicate with your staff all of the time. I think once you reach that point it breaks down defense mechanisms in your staff and allows them to feel empowered and confident that you have their best interests in mind instead of looking for what the are doing “wrong”.
This is a very helpful post. I appreciate how you broke a coaching session down into 4 basic components.
I have found that the best way to help someone feel comfortable and safe to share an issue or dilemma is to ask, “Help me understand……”. It changes the presentation of their narrative from having to defend oneself to educating the listener. It’s a shift in their mindset that allows the willingness to dig deep and find answers that may even feel uncomfortable.
I would love a copy of the book I am always looking for refreshing ideas for coaching
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Great reminders. I’m especially focused on the comment about change. I tell my teams and people I mentor that there is always more within your control than you think. Additionally, if we focus on controlling what we can control (and setting things we can’t control aside) we can more quickly come to solutions. There’s a good book “That’s Outside My Boat” by Charlie Jones and Kim Doren with good lessons on this.
I look forward to getting my e mail everyday. The book would be a great help.
Thanks for the great insight.
I love this explanation of different ways to problem-solve and explore staff needs. I hear staff say many times, I am not sure what to do or there is nothing else I can do. The statement “Their is always something in their control to change” is so true. I feel that this post spoke very loudly to me because it provides some simple statements/questions to help the staff person reflect on the situation and develop next steps that they may already know but feel defeated and unable to move forward. Sometimes I feel like I have to have an answer when the staff person may already have the answers and just need to say it/believe it.
I would love to learn more about coaching. I’m an elementary principal and this will be one of my goals for next year.
Coaching is a goal I have for myself this coming school year. I would love to support of the book.
Thank you for the offer. I am always looking to add additional “tools” in the toolbox as I coach and mentor those around me.
I appreciate the coaching style for work, but also for personal relationships and when volunteering. These are skills that can apply across all areas of relationships. Kids to adults! Thank you.
Appreciate these steps for communicating with teachers. I will begin my first year as an instructional coach in the 20/21 school year and I am very excited!
So many times people want to solve the problem, not help the person.
Yes! Teach others how to think critically! It is a skill not learned or taught in the “classroom.”
Terrific suggestions. Thank you!
The foundation of all great coaching conversations is trust. If there is established mutual trust before those first coaching conversations occur, they will be that much more successful. Would love to read your book!
I like the perspective of “coach the person, not the problem”. I appreciate all opportunities to improve my craft. Coaching is often an underutilized tool in the coaching tool belt, in my opinion, because people become frustrated and defensive with being coached. Often, they want to be told their right, no matter the issue, and how to “fix” the other person or issue. It’s not easy to help them focus on the real situation, their response, and how they can make the best of the situation and/or improve.
Great insight. Too often I want to rush to a solution. I love the idea of giving them the power. It is a skill I will need to work on and practice.
Agile thinking and action are critical to today’s shifting business environment, as we very clearly saw in the recent COVID crisis.
Relationships are what matter most in business and in life. Invest in people as it will make all the difference.
Be curious with questions, but watch the phrasing of them. Curiosity can come across as questioning the person excessively if not used correctly. As the article stated, repeat back and then ask deeper questions. It shows you are listening and care; this helps avoid it feeling like a probing.
I believe this approach will help me not only at work but with communicating with my son.
Great tips ! I would love to read a copy as I am on a journey to become an instructional coach.
I became certified as a coach about 10 years ago and have practiced asking “powerful questions” to help others move forward toward their goals. But after I heard Marcia speak two different times in WBECS webinars, I realized I was missing the emotional side of questioning. Her perspective has changed my approach to coaching, and it is amazing the responses I’m getting! Thanks, Marcia, for sharing your coaching wisdom and helping me see another way to approach coaching. Can’t wait to read your new book!
Starting with curiosity can be such a game changer. It really opens the door in so many way.
Would love a copy. Thank you
I like the focus on building the skills to help people become better at thinking for themselves and recognizing that there is always something in their control to change. Asking the questions to help them generate their own insights helps build that commitment to solving their problem.
Leadership is all about relationships and coaching requires relationship building. A routine coaching session builds a trust level especially when it’s with the simple steps explained in the post.
It makes me think of a couple cliches:
No coincidence that LISTEN and SILENT are spelled with the same letters.
God gave us two ears and one mouth so we should listen twice as much as we talk.
I think most all leaders struggle with both!
Currently working with a team of coaches in my district and book studies are a given doing these times away from school. I find your 4 practices an easy and quite effective way to improve our craft. I would be interested in reading your book to learn more meaningful ways to deepen our conversations.
With 11 years in this position, I find the more tools that you have in your toolbox the more productive you become has a coach. Thanks for offering a free book to 20 lucky educators.
Very informative tips for running teams effectively. Thank you
I need to grow in this area as a leader! Ask the question and then pause and truly listen. I long to help my team become more agile thinkers. This is the missing piece in our department, and I know it will be a game changer. It starts with the leader asking great questions. I look forward to reading this book and helping each team member “declare a next step to take within a specific time frame.” Thank you for sharing!
I love the summary today. It is the epitome of the essence of competent coaching. Coaching, not from a performance perspective, should always be about the person. Asking thought-provoking questions, reflective thinking, and active listening. A coach should never tell – but ask questions, ask, ask and ask … reframe and ask again. Coaching the person is at the heart of impactful coaching
I enjoy this site. I look forward to each days topic. This is a good one. Very helpful and a great way to start my day.
Coaching is a difficult pursuit–especially if you feel that the ball always needs to be in your hands to win the game. Constant reminders like these need to be put into play that it isn’t “quicker to tell people what to do” because in the long run, duplication of efforts by competent individuals wins the game. Thanks for sharing
Hello everyone! I find that curiosity is the antidote to many issues. It can help solve problems and can help build relationships. As a coach, it is one of the cornerstones of my practice. I would love to read more on this topic.
I find this piece very insightful, I am a young leadership trainer. Can you throw more light on the conversation tips.
Grateful for the e copy.
And I am always prompt to view posts here.
Thanks for these outstanding insights on the value of taking a coach approach to your leadership. These tips are spot on. Learning the coach approach changed my life as it is applicable everywhere!
An Outstanding approach to nurturing maturity in the lives of people. I think this people focus brings fitfulness and fulfilment to the person and hopefully the organisation. I would love to read a copy of your book too!
An Outstanding approach to nurturing maturity in the lives of people. I think this people focus brings fruitfulness and fulfilment to the individual and hopefully to the organisation. I would love to read a copy of your book too!
I love these nuggets of wisdom and I often share them with my colleagues. It is amazing how a couple of short paragraphs of guidance, when consistently applied, can have significant impact!
Coaching truly does start with the relationship. If you can’t establish trust or truly listen to the PERSON and their perspective on the problem, real growth and change will be hard to come by.
Thanks for all you do for us and the profession as a whole.
Great tips! Coaching is an investment in a person, and telling somebody what to do is directing a work product. If you invest in a person, you will have loyal colleagues and critical thinkers who are invested in the health and wealth of your company as a whole and who will do the same for their colleagues and your customers.
These are good reminders of how to be a good listener. We can easily slip into problem-solving mode and bombard the person with solution ideas. This approach, in the true sense of coaching, prompts performance from the “athlete.” Thanks.
Allowing individuals on my team to discover their own answers and path has been far more rewarding for both of us versus simply taking the easier road of giving quick direction or instruction. Coaching takes time on the front end although the back end benefit far surpasses the initial commitment.
“Once they trust you won’t make them wrong…” – TRUST is such an inherently necessary component of effective coaching. Establishing and maintaining it is key!
Noticing has always been importance but so relevant in this season. Listening to understand.
Thank you, Dr. Reynolds, for your insightful post! Coaching peers or subordinates is a lot like coaching our children. We can encourage them to think critically, plan independently, act confidently, and accept constructive criticism on their good-faith efforts — or we can develop co-dependencies. Our approach reveals much more about ourselves than our children, coworkers, or subordinates! All the best.
This is a great post.
The points of Dr. Marcia Reynolds are very powerful. I admire her approach which could be termed selfless coaching or perhaps even transformation listening. It’s a very different approach from simply putting information into a person.
All good wishes,
Coaching is key to developing your team. I definitely would like to learn more as an aspiring manager of people.
Great tips! When I train teams of supervisors in conducting safety observations, I explain that when they observe an employee not following the target method, it’s an opportunity to coach them to do the right thing. Your four steps would be useful in approaching management to sell them on the idea of implementing a safety observation program in the first place.
Great topic! I’d be interested in more posts that differentiate coaching from top-down, command and control management. The comments on this post are as illuminating as the post itself. It seems that the most effective coach begins with the genuine mindset that the manager’s role is to trust employees and empower them to do their best work.
I am wary though of coaching paradigms that imply that the manager has all the answers and the employees are deficient without the manager’s intervention. I like the statement attributed to Steve Jobs: “We don’t hire smart people so we can tell them what to do. We hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” You can embrace that philosophy and still be committed to be a learning organization.
If books are still available, I’d be grateful for a copy. Thank you!
Thank you for your article Marcia! I have been coaching leaders, and teaching coaching skills to leaders, for over 10 years and I too believe it is one of the most important skills a leader can posses. I also see it as one of the best ways to build critical thinking in individuals. A colleague of mine tells leaders they need to shift their focus from solving problems to helping others be able to solve their problems. Many of my clients over the years have told me about how they have begun to ask their teams the same types of questions I ask them and it has a tremendous impact. Dan, I also love your point about asking the next question. Just last week I was sharing that concept with two of my clients. Thanks for a great blog and Marcia thanks again for your article.
The third step is unique. In my experience leaders and coaches often push for a hard goal, such as a job title or x amount of money. But for some of us our goal may be more intangible to name. For example, I would like to work within the higher education space to promote and assist students with starting and completing college. I am open to what that looks like. I don’t have an end goal set in stone.
Thanks Debbie. You’re goal sounds a bit more like a mission statement. A goal might involve the number of students you one-on-one conversations with in a week.
Coaching has remained my best professional tool in handling Management & HR Consultancy Assignments at the corporate level. It’s the right way to bring in the desired changes at the top management level. This is possible with facts based information/data and projecting yourself as a catalyst to work in the organization interest.
I have followed a methodical approach of presenting the current scenario with existing gaps to a core team of officials. An open discussion with suggestions is the next step to come up with concrete developmental plan for individual SBU Heads. I have remained quite successful in winning the confidence of all with a fair & impartial approach keeping the organization interest at the centre.
The one question what a team member visualizes for their future growth really resonated with me. I’m going to use that with my staff and in the managers meetings I attend. It is good to pose questions we all need to be asked and the reflect on our own personal answer and possible the way it fits in the organization.
Learning to help other people solve their own problems, and resisting the urge to solve for them, is tough! I always appreciate hearing more about how to do this.
Great insights! I have a question about #3, Finding out what they want…
What if “what they want” is not “what they should want”?
By that, I mean that as the leader you might see:
* They have misunderstood their role or the project?
* They are placing to high or too low a priority on something as it relates to either their growth or the success of the team?
* They have missed key elements that are maybe pushing them towards actions and decisions because of a lack of clarity or more information?
Thanks Dan! I’d be interested from insights from you or anyone!
Great questions Page. I have a basic suggestion. Give liberty to high performers. Intervention is for poor performers.
Having said the above, coaching that is based on unclear objectives/goals won’t be very effective.
Also, when someone missed key aspects of a project, it doesn’t serve them well to move forward in confusion.
It seems like some of your concerns fall back on good communication before the coaching.
Here are some questions that might help people find more clarity and alignment. What are we/you trying to accomplish? What’s important about this project? How do you fit into the project? (
Very insightful and so true! People are individual and don’t fit into a box! Thanks in advance for the possibility of receiving a copy!
I would love to be considered for the book! Coaching is vital to our work and every opportunity to do it better is always awesome!
Wow that’s really interesting and great insights. I feel like it something I am partially doing but would love to learn more and read the book!
This is an area I feel like I have lived in the past year with at least four staff members. It seems there is always more to learn in order to do it better.
I’m extremely interested in being a better coach to my employees, for some reason coaching is not a strong suit of the organization that I’m with I have seen a lot of examples of how not to do it, now I would be grateful for ideas on doing a better job of coaching.
I love the blog and it makes me a better leader. Thank you for your insights! I would love to get a copy of the book.
What an important distinction just from the book title: “ Coach the Person, Not the Problem.” When we coach (in education, we might use facilitate – better IMO than teach, emphasizing learning / skills development rather the information delivery), if we ‘coach the problem,’ the tendency is to address specifics; and the temptation is to solve the problem or at least a very aligned example. If we ‘coach the person,’ the focus is on the person developing the skill of learning effectively (learning that’s useful for addressing meaningful situations) as well as other skills – including at a minimum: problem defining, problem solving, communicating, and working in groups. “Coaching the person” builds grit, perseverance, patience, …; “coaching the problem” builds dependency!
I can only imagine the shock and appreciation that the employee would feel getting all of this one on one attention, heart-felt conversation, and being listened to. They couldn’t help but to want to give their all when they are shown such compassion.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step hence committing to at least one small step ensures progress and growth! Greetings from Poland!
I’m an aspiring leader and want to facilitate real positive change in education.
Very timely for me and for our team just coming back from working at home due to Covid.
Also, as I have a side gig and am teambuilding- this reinforces my habit of giving the location to find the answer and the tools to use to answer their questions, but not just giving them the answer outright.
I look forward to daily doses of leadership advice. As a manager, my goal is to mentor my direct reports (supervisor level) so they can one day replace me. With that said, I too want to continue learning and growing so that I am effective every day and not just on occasion. Thank you for the opportunity to receive a complimentary copy of Dr. Reynolds’ book.
What a great way for leaders to look at what they do on a daily basis…COACH!
Great thoughts and strategies. Coaching is also a learning process and many times dependent on the person you are coaching and their situation/environment. It’s like building a “tool box” for assisting leaders in their growth and development.
Thank you so fmuch for this helpful advise. It really helps me. to analyse where I can improve.
I LOVE these recommendations! I am constantly wanting and learning to hopefully get better in my approach to coaching others. Staying curious is a key one, especially when there are task lists, deadlines, and efficiency runs through your veins. Without being present and actually listening, it is almost guaranteed that rapport won’t be built, trust is suspect, and both parties’ time will have been wasted with little to no results following. Thanks for this reminder!
It all starts with the coaching mindset that it is all about them. I resist “telling” or “advising” and work to help them discover their goals and steps. I love the step on reflecting what you hear and see. Asking them about what they’ve done, impact, how do they know, what haven’t they tried and who could they talk to reveals so much. Great topic!
I love the concept of coaching. Thank you for the article and opportunity to receive your book.
I feel like I have to be “BETTER” at “everything” in order to coach a person! So, to narrow it down, what specific area needs to be better first than others?
I am committed this year to develop my coaching skills with my team. I want to move from being a manager, to being a coach and I think this book would be incredibly helpful! I appreciate the opportunity to be able to learn more from you. 🙂
I appreciate your bullet point about helping clients take a small step. That is often the action step we don’t get to when having coaching conversations, and it is a high leverage practice that can move someone out of inertia into purpose and vision.
Coaching is a great topic. In my line of work, resourcefulness, attention to detail, and critical thinking are invaluable skills that often need significant cultivation. Using coaching techniques to help guide others to seek new resources, identify areas for improvement, and correct errors in their own work helps to improve the overall quality of what they produce.
Love this insight. I was fortunate to work with a company for 40 years and learn to practice many of these coaching skills. Dr. Reynolds brings the key steps in developing others the right way. I appreciate the step to “ what does the end look like”. Hearing what success looks like is so important!
I don’t know how many young leaders I’ve sent the way of leadership freak.
Thank you Nancy.
Any suggestions on how to get a supervisor to do better coaching? My current supervisor is the self-proclaimed master of the phrase ‘yes, but’.
That’s a tough one. A main aspect of coaching is creating options and then choosing a path forward, not being forced to change.
Is there some way to work on this where it feels like you’re on your supervisors side, not trying to fix them?
In any case, it’s a tough one.
Thanks for the opportunity to gain more insight on effective coaching.
This is exactly the article I needed today! Excited for the chance to read more about coaching!
Even the title implies coaching treats each person as an individual. I’m curious how emotional intelligence and people smart skills are addressed in this book.
What a great article. The importance of coaching others to achieve their full potential is often over looked. A good coach gives of there time and attention fully to ensure that other person feels valued and supported to achieve great things-
Next up: getting rid of performance evaluation paperwork!!
I think using the question “how would you like the story to end?” is genius, as it flows naturally into determining possible actions with the end in mind. Thank you, I’m going to add this to my practice.
I would love to read your book. I’m a coach and I’m always looking to grow in order to create the coaching culture I strive for.
Amen. I agree you need to work with the person so they can identify the problem, and help guide them to an answer that they come up with and them let them tell you how they will proceed with their own solutions to the problem.
I am a leader in Australian Public Service (essential services) and have found that staff have really struggled emotionally and mentally with the impacts of Corona Virus. I feel that being empowered with practical strategies and tactics to empower staff to be able to share and work through their feelings and move forward in a positive way is crucial in this current environment. Although I have had 10 years in leadership, I am always in need of tools such as this to help support my staff so that I can enable them to effectively deliver services to the vulnerable Australians in need. Really interested in this resource and any other similar ones. Thank you for sharing your tips.
Thank you, Dr. Reynolds! I needed to see those words and remind myself of those important tips of a good leader and coach when dealing with employees, clients, club or organization members, especially during these chaotic times! Help them to find their own solutions, guide them to work together and come up with new ideas. I don’t have to burn both ends of the candle alone! I need them in big bold letters on my wall, but I’d be just as appreciative to see your book on my desk (which tips I may enlarge and place on my wall!).
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Really great advice on how to empower employees so that they really do learn and improve in their work. So important.
Coaching a person up has the potential to be life-changing.
Thanks, Dan, for always bringing insight and wisdom to my inbox!
Love this and it is indeed a mindset shift required for leaders to consider changing their style of conversations to a more coaching style. The effort is so worth it, when you get problem solving independent and valuable team members who are productive whether the Leader is there or not
‘There’s always something in their (my) control to change ‘
That hit me strongly. Thank you!
Nice to see your coach the person not the problem. Really it is meant for it.
Classic approach revitalized! I was brought up having conversations at the dinner table, which as I look back, they were perfect coaching opportunities for my parents.
I would love to read her book!
Love this concise guide; it’s so important to be curious about what’s going on, about what’s really going on, to actively listen and reflect, and call to action.
You’ve never seen a coach pitch a perfect game. They can tell the pitcher to throw strikes that a batter can’t hit, but that’s not going to get the job done either. A good coach analyzes a pitcher’s mechanics, observes, comments and encourages.
The coach’s role is to help the pitcher realize their best version of themselves and use the skills they have developed to achieve the goal. Sometimes you get the perfect game, hopefully you get a pitcher who effectively gets the job done more often than not.
Let’s not confuse coaching with doing the job. Sounds like Dr. Reynolds’ 4 steps can coach the coaches.
Would love to read this book! Looking forward to hearing Marcia Reynolds speak at the WBECS pre summit.
Great advice! I truly enjoy my daily Leadership Freak emails!
Love the breakdown into the 4 areas, very conversational which is always the best way to get buy in from coachees. Glad I’m not the only one who comes up against leaders who like the coaching approach but prefer to just tell!!
I would love a copy of the book.
Holding back from blurting out “have you tried this, or this, or this…” is tough when you choose to “solve” the issue quickly and get back to what you were doing.
I’m not looking at this from a manager-employee coaching perspective. I’m thinking between co-workers. The opportunity for coaching exists everywhere.
From that perspective, i do feel coaching takes a bit longer than blurting solutions. As the “rework” on teaching people how to fish, doesn’t always fall back to me. 🙂
I really liked “You got quiet when you mentioned that. Can you tell me what you were thinking?” in the Share what You Notice section.
I can see some great reflection time as a result of that question.
From experience as a training facilitator, being comfortable with silence took a bit to get used to. Silence doesn’t mean empty or nothing is happening. People need to process what has been asked and their thoughts.
To choose coaching over solving means a more involved interaction. More time; More thinking; More being present; And more connecting.
Stating what I notice (you got quiet when..) and then asking for them to open up about the situation and their response to it (can you tell me what you were thinking?) is very powerful.
They will need some time to reflect, and judge their feeling of safety with me, to be able to open up and share.
Thanks for the reminder that if my intent is to help people, I need to make a choice to do what is really needed. If my intent is to get back to my own work, that will show through in the actions I take when approached by someone with a coaching opportunity.
Some good insights here already! I’d definitely benefit from a more in-depth study of this topic. Thanks, Dan, for once more putting just the right insights on the post!
Some of the hardest parts of leadership and especially when you are busy, is taking the time to listen and coach versus give a quick answer or solution to the problem. But we need to help others talk through and figure things out to help them grow.
‘find out what they want’ – so true and so simple yet continuously overlooked.
These are great tips. Thank you for sharing!! Hoping to read your book soon.
I love these 4 tips and especially to coach the person and not the problem.
Powerful change agents which help tune into the person’s view of the situation and get them to take action.
Love your blog posts @Leadership Freak.
I’m in a new position with a new organization and I am challenged to grow in my own development as a leader. Meanwhile, my new company could use a major culture change from top to bottom. Appreciate your posts and the resources you make available.
Love this insightful post which just wants to get me coaching right away.
You have gained yourself a subscriber!
Love the content and the vibe that you’re bringing out here!
These are so simple and so powerful. Thank you.
I concur, coaching enables strength development in our employees. It fosters empowerment and increased problem solving skills.
Great tips! I appreciate how you described coaching in an easy to implement 4-step process!
Excellent ideas and I appreciate how you “pare it down”. I would love to receive the book!
I love the third step in asking what they want. People miss opportunities because they didnt know what it looked like when it passed them up. Leaders help others recognize those opportunities and have the courage to take the first step.
Great information for someone working in this type of role for the first time!
I appreciate the additional perspectives and questions for coaching use in this post. I’m adding more to my coaching toolkit. Thanks!
Coaching my managers and helping them to coach their staff is such an vitally important challenge.
I would love another resource to equip me and encourage them.
I would love to win a new book to read.
Thank you alot for encouraging us to read
It seems so obvious, its astonishing that (some) leaders still assume the directive approach is best – “teach a man to fish …”. A very useful post thanks
The best coaching happens without the coachee (is that a word?) knowing! I have previously worked with an Executive Coach that had a very clear agenda for our discussions, however, I learned quickly that I opened-up most as the coachee when having a casual conversation. It was a profound learning for me when I would reflect on our conversations to realize I shared more when comfortable as opposed to answering questions in a q&a format. I’ve carried this forward with the team I manage today and the results have been better than I could have expected.
Starting the conversation with conviction and candor as the coach has allowed me to have more fluid and honest conversations with my team when approaching a subject from a coaching perspective. There is a real win when a sense of safety in the environment is established early in the conversation. I’ve also found leaving the call with a call to action has proven to be better in gaining traction as opposed to hanging-up the phone or leaving the conversation with simply a feeling of a good discussion.